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I Am Number Four (Lorien Legacies, Book 1) Hardcover – August 3, 2010
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Amazon Best Books of the Month, August 2010: John Smith has just arrived in Paradise, Ohio, just another stop in a string of small towns where the 15-year-old has been hiding out from the Mogadorians. Those terrifying aliens are hellbent on destroying him and the other nine Loric children who have sought refuge on Earth. The Mogadorians are picking off the surviving kids in numerical order. The first three are dead and John's number is up. Will his Legacies, his defining super powers, develop in time for him to fight against the enemy? I Am Number Four is a breathless page-turner of a sci-fi novel that will have readers rooting for the teen alien who must unleash his fire power to save himself, his human friends, and the planet. This is the first of a slated multi-book series that, judging by this first book, will help reinvigorate a traditional YA genre that's grown a bit light on strong character development. So, gear-up sci-fi fans, the battle for Earth is on and there's a new kid in town! --Lauren Nemroff
Will Hill's new thrilling trilogy kicks off with Department Nineteen. Recently he was able to ask some questions of the mysterious Pittacus Lore. Read the resulting Amazon-exclusive interview below, or turn the tables to see what happened when Pittacus interviewed Will.
Will: Number Four is told to blend in but he finds this a difficult task. Being a mysterious figure yourself, has this ever happened to you?
Pittacus: I have always taken great care to conceal my identity. I change my appearance regularly. I do not speak or correspond with many people. No one has ever suspected me of being what I am, which is an alien military leader with superpowers. If anyone ever does, it will be a bad day for me.
Will: Why is now the time to write the unknown history of the planet Lorien and the Nine? What do you think the people of Earth can learn from the Lorien Legacies?
Pittacus: We are in the middle of a war to save the remaining Lorien, and to save earth. We thought the people of earth might want to know about it. I hope humanity does not make the same mistake we did on our planet, which was to be unprepared the day war arrived on a grand scale.
Will: Who do you think would win in a fight, Dracula or a Mogadorian?
Pittacus: Dracula wouldn’t stand a chance. If he tried to drink Mogadorian blood he’d poison himself. It’s would be like drinking battery acid.
Will: Number Four has his legacies as his best weapon. Do you think John could be an agent of Department Nineteen?
Pittacus: Once we have vanquished the Mogadorians, maybe that is what he will become. He certainly has some mad skills.
Will: Sarah in I Am Number Four is in love with an alien. Jamie in Department Nineteen is falling for a vampire named Larissa. What makes young love just so difficult? Do you think these crazy kids/vampires/aliens will ever make it work?
Pittacus: Love is a beautiful and confusing thing. I hope they all live happily ever after.
Will: I Am Number Four has made the perfect action sci-fi movie. What has it been like to see this come to life on the big screen?
Pittacus: It’s been thrilling and fun and very cool. We’re hoping to see all six of the books become films.
Will: What can we expect in The Power of Six?
Pittacus: Six is a powerful young woman. Mogadorians fear her. In The Power of Six, we see why.
From School Library Journal
Grade 7 Up—Despite the amazing powers that many of the people of Lorien possess, the planet was defeated and its natural resources looted by Mogadorians in a matter of days. Only nine children escaped with their guardians to Earth, where they planned to hide until they developed their powers in order to defeat their enemies and revive Lorien. The Mogadorians hunt the Nine and have already killed three of them. And that's just the backstory. When Number Four, bearing the name "John Smith," moves to Paradise, OH, he runs afoul of the school bully, falls for the most beautiful girl in town, and befriends the local alien conspiracy nerd in short order. There is plenty of great action, but the dialogue is average, as is the character development. With its interesting premises and a fast-pace telling, the story will grab readers who are willing to suspend quite a bit of disbelief. Others, who like their science fiction with a bit more science and internal logic, will have to search elsewhere.—Eric Norton, McMillan Memorial Library, Wisconsin Rapids, WI
(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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So recommendations for teen boys often meant I would recommend The Hunger Games. Unfortunately many guys aren't too keen on reading a book in which the main character is a girl, no matter how good the story is. So after going through the other 5 or 6 good teen guy books I could think of I would often recommend a book in the general fiction and literature section, but parents often fear that their children will encounter questionable subject matter. Which they may, but they should also remember many of the books their children read in school are found in the fiction and literature not the teen section.
I found "I am Number Four" to be a great action adventure, that followed the traditional hero archetype. The main character, number Four or John Smith, is as relatable as a alien teenager on the run can be. The surrounding cast of characters rounds out this alien boys average existence, Henri, his alien guardian/father figure, Sam, his nerdy best friend, Sarah, his crush, and Mark, a bully and Sarah's ex. The story is a super power driven action packed adventure, filled with all the tender feelings and angst that a every teenager has.
It was a quick read. I got through it in about a day and a half. I would recommend this book for anyone over the age of 13.Read more ›
My favorite part of the book has to be the final battle with the Mogadorians. I enjoyed this part mainly because of the never ending suspense and thrill throughout the whole battle. The fight does feel a bit long at points, but still maintains excitement throughout the entire battle. Another one of the reasons that I enjoyed this part was all the main characters in the novel coming together to fight against the Mogadorians. There are many other exciting and suspenseful segments of the book, but the battle is my favorite.
On the other hand, my least favorite part of the book is definitely Four's dreams/flashbacks to Lorien. Throughout the entire book they feel unneeded and do not contribute to the plot other than maybe one or two of them. The flashbacks give the feeling that they are in the book only to fill space, and not to entertain the reader. Some people may feel different about them, and may enjoy learning about the lore and backstory of Lorien. Other than the flashbacks, I enjoyed most of the book and would recommend it to others.
This book can easily appeal to many different kinds of people, with the sudden hints of romance included, and the intense and thrilling battles against the Mogadorians. In my opinion, the book is mainly written for people who like reading Sci-Fi and learning about alien life. However, the book does manage to include some romance and drama.
John Smith and his guardian Henri seem to be living a normal life in Paradise, Ohio and John seems to be an ordinary teenager. John is most definitely not an ordinary teenager and keeping a low profile is essential for him. He is on the run and is an alien from the planet Lorien. Aliens that are evil and from the planet Mogadore, destroyed his world and are now hunting anyone that escaped.
There were nine Loric children that come to Earth to hide until they grew up and developed their Legacies. The powers that would help them fight back, survive and save Earth. Three are now dead. John is Number Four and knows he is next.
This is a story that is full of action and adventure and makes for a very fast read. It will also have readers checking out the other books in the series to learn more about this world and those that live in it. Reading how John fights to stay alive makes for an amazing read and will have readers hoping for more about him in the other books. It will also have readers hoping for a good ending at the end of the series. The book is full twists and turns and definitely takes readers on a roller coast ride that is unforgettable.
Which did happen to be the case here. Which is nice since it had the potential to be a full blown train wreck. Let's face it a book about an alien teenager coming of age on the Planet Earth with enemies looking for him so that they can kill him and his other Alien refugees (but it has to be done in numerical order) has the potential to be a whole load of sour grapes. Fortunately for me (although maybe not for fans of Twilight) the author doesn't wallow in the pathos of being a teenager and an outsider in overwhelming detail. Enough to know it is there and to add to the overall sense of loss that is supposed to be a part of the Main Character's life.
This book is every bit as good as the movie at delivering good pacing, without letting the 'alien' aspects of it overwhelm the story.
I am quite impressed and will be looking forward to reading more of this authors work.